Hikaru No Go Episode 1 Recap

It’s finally here! Hikaru No Go episode 1!

If you haven’t heard of Hikaru No Go, it’s a manga that tells the story of a young man and his trials with Go (a board game that is just as complex as chess if not more).

I read it multiple times during my high school days and I can’t believe it’s back in adaptation form!

Hikaru No Go Episode 1 Recap Highlights:

  • Shi Guang finds a mysterious Go board and awakens a spirit
  • Chu Ying finally gets to play Go after 300 years
  • Yu Liang discovers a potential Go player who’s more skillful than him

That being said, let’s jump right into the Hikaru No Go episode 1 recap!

The First Meeting

A monk chants away at a local temple within a dark room until he notices that his candle is blown out.

He predicts something is coming.

Fangyuan City, 1997

Then far away, in a city that’s up on the rise, a young boy stands in front of a toy shop.

With eyes staring at the motorized car vehicles.

He has his heart set on one particular model.

hikaru no go episode 1 recap - hikaru
Young Shi Guang, our main character (aka Hikaru)

This kid is adorable! I can sense hearts coming from his eyes XD because he reaaaaally wants this toy.

But he can’t afford it.

His classmate lectures him for not going home, but he counters that she hasn’t gone home either. Just so she could grab a popsicle.

In a split second decision, he “borrows” her money to reserve his car toy before dashing off to gather the rest.

The girl chases after him.

Shi Guang sprints to his grandfather’s home and rummages through the attic.

To find something he can pawn off. While his classmate waits just outside, thinking he’ll get into trouble for this.

The naggy childhood friend who “tries” to get you out of trouble XD

Then Shi Guang discovers an old Go game board.

He rubs a finger on it and a bright light flashes before his eyes. Blinding him.

Moments later, he starts hearing a mysterious voice. Who asks if he can hear him.

And Shi Guang thinks a ghost has appeared in the attic.

While the weather outside changes for the worse.

As the rain pours down outside, the mysterious voice continues to speak as a spiritual being appears.

Thanking the gods for allowing him to come back after 300 years.

A Friend(?) Only He Can See

hikaru no go episode 1 recap - sai
Chu Ying (aka Sai)

Really liked the animation for the emergence of Chu Ying! I thought it was done really well

The spirit asks Shi Guang to allow him to live in the corner of his consciousness if he can relate to his pain.

Then introduces himself as Chu Ying, a top Go player who used to play often with Emperor Wu back in the day.

And Shi Guang passes out before waking up again at the hospital.

He has no interest in the ghost’s backstory and tells him to go away.

While his grandfather and his classmate wonder if he’s making up excuses so he doesn’t have to go to school.

Chu Ying explains that Shi Guang is the ONLY one who can see him.

But the later believes he just acquired some extra baggage.

The expressions are hilarious. I really like this kid actor. XD

On the way to school, Shi Guang tells his female classmate, Jiang Xue Ming that someone has been following them the whole time.

hikaru no go episode 1 recap invisibility
Jiang Xue Ming on the left

But Jiang Xue Ming doesn’t see anyone and takes off.

While Chu Ying explains that he believes he encountered many people as fate.

Previously, Chu Ying met Xiao Bai Long who helped him satisfy his desire to play Go. But past away before he could help him discover the Divine move of Go.

So Shi Guang is stuck with Chu Ying for now. Chu Ying wants Shi Guang to help him fulfill his wish.

But Shi Guang is not interested in Go at all. And discovers a newfound condition of his.

Whenever Chu Ying feels despair at not being able to play Go, Shi Guang feels nauseous and wants to throw up.

hikaru no go episode 1 recap test

Finding Someone to Play Go

So Shi Guang decides to help Chu Ying after he helped him steal the spotlight by answering the question for an event quiz.

And the two of them head over to his grandfather’s place. Shi Guang places the pieces according to Chu Ying’s direction.

But Shi Guang places the piece inside the squares not on the intersection of the lines.

A total newb. XD

His grandfather loses interest and gives Shi Guang some beginner books to learn Go.

And Chu Ying loses his chance to play Go. After 300 years of waiting in utter darkness.

After returning home, Chu Ying teaches Shi Guang the basics of Go. To help prep him for the next game.

But the next day, Shi Guang’s grandfather is too busy to play. So they need to find someone else.

And Shi Guang wonders why Chu Ying is so desperate to play Go.

So Chu Ying explains that there was a time he was neglected by the emperor. Until one day, he was asked to play against a rising Go player.

In front of the emperor.

However, the other player, was not up to his skill level and set him up for cheating.

Causing Chu Ying to lose the emperor’s favor and his reputation.

When he attempted suicide, he was mysteriously trapped into this Go board for thousands of years.

Until he met Xiao Bai Long and then later, Shi Guang.

Shi Guang feels moved by Chu Ying’s story and wanders around the town with him to find someplace to play Go.

Then they discover a Go club.

But you have to pay to play.

So Shi Guang reluctantly forks over five dollars to play against a child around his age.

Not knowing he is Yu Liang.

Professional Child Go Player

A young professional Go player.

hikaru no go episode 1 recap akira
Young Yu Liang on the right (aka Akira)

Yu Liang tries to refuse but is irked by Shi Guang’s exaggeration of his own skills.

So the two start a game.

But Shi Guang clearly plays like a newbie. The way he holds his pieces and doesn’t know the intersection numbering by heart.

However, Chu Ying is clearly eager to play. And directs the pieces.

Some time afterwards, Shi Guang finishes the game and begins to leave the premises.

While the receptionist from earlier believes he has lost and hands him a junior tournament flyer.

But it was actually the opposite.

hikaru no go episode 1 recap guide game

And after deciphering the moves, Yu Liang is shocked to find out that he was actually being guided in the match.

So he HAD to ask for his opponent’s name.

Dun Dun Dunnnn Shi Guang has done it now XD

Home|Next Episode>>


Wow, I was pleasantly surprised by the animation of Chu Ying rising from the board. I thought it was really well done.

And the way the light shines on him to give him a glow so we know he’s a spirit.

Then there’s the kid who plays Shi Guang. Full of banter that suits his know-it-all age.

The kid who plays Yu Liang matches quite well as Akira too. I also like the portrayal of Chu Ying.

His interactions with the young Shi Guang are adorable and funny.

I think I will continue watching and see how this show develops.

What were your thoughts on Hikaru No Go episode 1? Leave a comment below!

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x